Skyshards are a bit like leprechauns: Some people never see them, and some -- usually the heavily inebriated souls awake at 2 am -- see them all the time. You need 10 for a Sky Crystal which brings Alani crashing out of her route around the Vale. Because that's the only way to get the Thundering Ruby Cloud Serpent, and because some of us are working on Mount Parade and will barf the next time we see the Argent Tournament, sometimes you just have to resign yourself to a long and boring grind. However, if you've got to kill thousands of mobs anyway, you might as well make the most out of it and improve your hourly genocidal "wages" with a few things:
- Helpful Wikky's Whistle A rare drop off Major Nanners. While definitely the least helpful item on this list, the Whistle isn't expensive to use and doesn't use a trinket slot. Blow it, and a tiny hozen will appear. Talk to him, and he'll run off to forage for you while you kill mobs. Once you get to around 50, Wikky will reappear with a Bag of Helpful Things. Warning: He vanishes fairly quickly if you don't talk to him, so keep an eye on the emotes in your chat screen. He'll always announce his presence.
- Ancient Guo-Lai Cache Key Assuming you're grinding the mogu in the Vale (and you should be), you'll be getting these occasionally. While the caches themselves aren't that lucrative, they often contain Treasures of the Vale which drop lots of profession materials.
- Potion of Luck Somewhat expensive, but you'll be nabbing free golden lotii from Guo-Lai caches and Spirits of Harmony anyway. The income from the ore, leather, and cloth you'll find in Plundered Treasures really adds up, and will more than pay for the cost of the potion's materials if you have to buy them.
- Golden Fleece and Golden Moss These are rare drops off Omnis Grinlok and Rock Moss respectively. Interestingly, they can be equipped at the same time, although they both have a 5-minute internal cooldown. Whether the gold income is worth a slower kill rate from the loss of DPS trinkets will depend on your gear.
- Cooking materials Assuming you've maxed Cooking and learned all the recipes from the Guo-Lai caches, you can make inexpensive top-quality raid food like Seasoned Pomfruit Slices and Stuffed Lushrooms. The finished products can be sold on the AH.